OT: VW accused of evading emission tests

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Submitted by no_such_reality on September 18, 2015 - 12:54pm

VW could face $18-billion fine for evading smog rules, cheating pollution tests

Wow, from 2009 to 2015, VW is accused of writing engine control software to detect and change the engine programming during emission tests in order to pass and other wise allow up to 40X regulated levels.

The German automaker – which has admitted manipulating the cars – will eventually have to recall all of the vehicles and change the emissions systems at its own expense, regulators said. Additionally it could face a fine of about $18 billion, or $37,500 per car, federal environmental officials said.

The software trick allows the cars to emit up to 40 times the legally allowable pollution, environmental officials said.

Double wow.

I don't foresee jail time which is unfortunate, but $18 Billion for this kind for premeditated fraud seems light, barely equal to the revenue from the selling of the modified vehicles. The penalty needs to be much steeper to make any other company pause.

Submitted by XBoxBoy on October 11, 2015 - 8:59pm.

This week's Economist had a really interesting letter to the editor touching on how well known the strategy of having your software detect testing and modify emissions to look good in the testing is:

Letter to the Editor in Economist Magazine wrote:
In 1998 America’s Environmental Protection Agency reached a $1 billion settlement with heavy-duty diesel-engine manufacturers over their use of precisely the same software approach as VW. There were literally hundreds of articles discussing this use of engine- controller software in technical, popular and engineering-news journals. Media reports show that officials from the EPA were present at a meeting in 1994 at which an EPA staff member discussed control strategies based on the test cycle. This demonstrates that at the very least the EPA had notice that electronic engine-controllers were being programmed to detect tests as early as 1994. It is impossible for any competent regulator to have been unaware of what was going on with other diesel engines after 1998.

Here's the link: http://www.economist.com/news/letters/21...

If all this is true, then it is far less likely that a rogue programmer or two inserted the code without anyone up the food chain being aware.

The full letter is fascinating also because it calls for regulators to be held accountable for failing to detect this and honestly if true I couldn't agree more.

Submitted by no_such_reality on October 15, 2015 - 7:06pm.

So what's the tally today. Global CeO resigned. North American CEo resigned day after. Month later, the appointed exec to be North American CEO resigns. Chief communication officer resign earlier. 2016 fleet identified to have additional coding in it. And home country Germany, issues recall of 2.4 million units and prompts recall of 8 million across Europe

Oh, and the head of Diesel engine development from 2006 to 2010, he's the fourth senior engineer being suspended.


Submitted by svelte on October 15, 2015 - 9:50pm.

Rarely do you see a clear cut case in business where outright fraud was committed for so long by such a large company.

It's been weeks now and this case still floors me. BP, well I thought they tried hard to remedy their error and I don't think it was intentional anyway.

But this one. To purposely put in cheat software. Purposely!

I want Volkswagen to pay dearly. I really do.

Submitted by svelte on March 11, 2016 - 8:34am.

VW still - still! - doesn't get what deep sh*t they are in.

They oust their top US exec after he requests $1K credit for owners as goodwill until they get things sorted out. Sales down 9% this year, which is actually better than I expected.


California rejected their first fix attempt and sent them back to the drawing board.

This is an arrogant, arrogant company. No VWs for me.

Submitted by spdrun on March 11, 2016 - 9:08am.

Diesels = less CO2 emissions. If they add a bit to smog, so? Smog might block enough light to temper the greenhouse effect :)

Submitted by svelte on March 11, 2016 - 4:57pm.

And now this:


It was late January, at the Detroit auto show, and Herbert Diess, the global chief of Volkswagen AG’s namesake brand, was sounding out U.S. dealers as the company grappled with the biggest crisis in its modern history. Perhaps, Diess wondered aloud, VW should stop trying to compete with the likes of Toyota Motor Corp. in America and go back to focusing on higher-end models.

More evidence they are oblivious. VW is not a high end name in the United States! That is why the Phaeton failed here!

Submitted by spdrun on March 11, 2016 - 5:14pm.

They already have high-end marques. They're called Audi and Bugatti.

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